Weekly News Bulletin: 7 September 2015

May I take this opportunity to welcome students back after the summer break and hope that you all had an enjoyable and relaxing time.

As many of you may have read in the local newspapers 61% of our students who sat their GCSE exams in the summer achieved five or more A* to C grades including English and Maths and we saw 99.5% of our students pass their A-level exams, with grades of A* to E.  A total of 67% of students achieved A* to C grades.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank students, dedicated staff and parents for their support to ensure our students achieve their full potential.

In the summer term of 2015 we were successful in gaining £650k conditions improvement funding from the government.   Works on a new mechanical heating system and improvements to the roofs on C & D blocks are currently taking place.  If funds allow, some windows in D block will also be replaced.  These works will improve the environment for students and staff, especially during the colder months.

Mr S Knight – Headteacher

Sexting
This is a growing problem in all schools and for young people of today.  This news article below demonstrates some of the serious consequences which can result.  Please talk about it with your children, (it is a problem even with primary age children), and help them to understand some of the risks they are taking if they engage in this behaviour.  Despite our efforts in school to teach the students the possible consequences of their actions it remains an issue.  We will continue to teach the students the risks of “sexting” and other safety issues throughout this academic year, but would appreciate it if parents could reinforce the messages we give please.

Thank you for your support.
Miss L Brammer – Designated Child Protection Co-ordinator 

Article from BBC News:
Sexting’ boy’s naked selfie recorded as crime by police
A boy who sent a naked photograph of himself to a girl at school has had the crime of making and distributing indecent images recorded against him by police, the BBC has learnt.

The boy, aged 14, who was not formally arrested or charged, could have his details stored for at least 10 years.

The information could also be disclosed to future employers, his mother said.

The Criminal Bar Association said the case highlights the dangers of needlessly criminalising children.

The schoolboy, who lives in the north of England, told BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme he took the naked photo of himself in his own bedroom.

He then sent it to a girl from his school using Snapchat – an app which deletes direct messages within 10 seconds.

However, before the image disappeared, the girl saved it on her own phone and it was then sent to other pupils at the school.

‘Humiliated’
The matter was brought to the attention of a police officer based at the school and it has now been officially recorded as a crime.

If he had been aged over 18 he would have been the victim of so-called “revenge porn”.

However, his mother was told her son’s details – along with those of the girl involved and another teenager – had been added to a police intelligence database and could be stored for at least 10 years.

She said the school police officer said the incident could be flagged up in an advanced CRB check, if her son ever wanted to get a job working with children.

She told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme her son has been “humiliated”, saying he was “at best naive” and at worst was just being “a teenager”.

Many children at the school now take part in so-called “sexting” as a form of “flirting”, she said.

The boy, who has asked to remain anonymous, said he felt “embarrassed and a bit intimidated” by the way the incident had been dealt with by police and his school.

‘Important questions’
Asked about the consequences of the incident, he added: “It is just annoying really.

“Something that I did when I was 14 that could reflect badly in the future.”

The school said there was no aggression of intimidation during his questioning and that the boy admitted what he had done straight away.

It said all students are taught about the dangers of sexting in assemblies and in class.

The boy’s mother said police had only recently started filing crime reports about similar incidents, something her son says he was not aware of.

However, the school said all students were informed about the recent change in policy.

BBC Home affairs correspondent Danny Shaw said the case raises “important questions about the role of the police in dealing with disputes arising from social media”.